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UNESCO World Heritage Site #23: Hwaseong Fortress

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World Heritage Site #23: Hwaseong Fortress

World Heritage Site #23: Hwaseong Fortress

From the World Heritage inscription:

When the Choson emperor Chongjo moved his father’s tomb to Suwon at the end of the 18th century, he surrounded it with strong defensive works, laid out according to the precepts of an influential military architect of the period, who brought together the latest developments in the field from both East and West. The massive walls, extending for nearly 6 km, still survive; they are pierced by four gates and equipped with bastions, artillery towers and other features.

This photo will take some explanation…

Suwon is about an hour ride by commuter train from Seoul. When I arrived in Suwon I walked to the castle, getting lost on the way in the cold weather. When I got to the castle I just walked up the first stairs I found along the wall of the castle.

When I got to the top I saw a bunch of guys standing around in traditional dress. I figured that because it was an historical site, they must be doing some re-enactment for school kids or something.

When I get to the top of the hill, I find a ton of people, cameras, lights and big cranes. They were shooting a movie! Me, some dopy white guy with a camera, comes over the top of the hill where no one was stations, because they didn’t think anyone would be walking around the part of the grounds. Had I been there a minute or two sooner, I would have walked right into the middle of their shot.

I stuck around for about an hour watching everyone do their thing. I had never been on a movie set before, so I found that much more interesting than the historical relics around me. The director looked like a Korean hippie. I have photos of him and the lead actor, but I have no idea who they are.

Being the only white guy on the set, and having a camera, I was asked if I was from Hollywood. I said no, and was told I had to stop taking photos. I should have lied and just said I worked with Tom Cruise or Steven Spielberg or something.

To this day I have no idea what the name of the movie was. If anyone can help me figure it out, I’d love to track down the movie and watch it. The shooting of the movie took place in Early/mid December of 2007.

  • 5 Comments... What's your take?

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Comments

  1. Jason Nugent says:

    There is a free app called Files Lite available for the iPod touch that is both a file organizer and a PDF reader. It supports a bunch of other file formats and will do what you need.

    O’Reilley has also published an app called Bookbag that lets you read books that you’ve purchased as PDF within Safari.

  2. Gary says:

    I am pretty sure there is an app which lets you read PDF files, but I have never used it.

  3. Rolf says:

    Hey Gary,

    Just wondering if you had any comments on the performance of you ipod touch?

    Was thinking of getting one. But I’d like to be able to read PDF’s and write a few short notes.

    Does the ipod touch you are using allow this?

  4. Kevin says:

    That’s fun. When I was in Melbourne, a Korean car commercial was being filmed on the street and side alleys, which were entirely closed off, which meant the entrance to my hostel was blocked for 90 minutes (they certainly were there longer, I just happened to arrive towards the end). There were suited men stationed everywhere launching themselves at people with cameras to stop them from filming/snapping. I never found out which car company it was, there were no logos on anything (possibly added in post-production to aid in secrecy).

  5. Stevo says:

    What a cool story, Gary. Too bad they didn’t ask you to be in the film. I have a colleague that is a big Asian film buff, I’ll forward the photos to him and see if he can ID them.

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